Whistleblower Protection platform largely welcomes EU agreement
Members of the WhistleblowerProtection.EU platform mainly welcomed the provisional agreement reached by the European Parliament and the Council, in the early hours of the 12th of March. Members celebrated victory in the final battle on reporting channels, which they had lobbied hard for in recent weeks.
The fact that the EU’s whistleblower protection package now leans heavily towards the European Parliament's proposals, which offer whistleblowers strong protection from facing reprisals, being fired or demoted, has been warmly applauded by platform members. The removal of internal mandatory reporting from the text, which the platform has lobbied hard for in recent weeks, is also being celebrated.
Commenting on today’s momentous whistleblower protection agreement, Nick Aiossa, Senior Policy Officer at Transparency International EU said: ‘Today is a historic day for those who wish to expose corruption and wrongdoing. Whistleblowers in the EU, like Howard Wilkinson, the Danske Bank whistleblower, have spent far too long facing unjust retaliation for speaking out. It is quite an accomplishment that negotiations between the institutions have come to a positive end.’
The removal of internal mandatory reporting from the text, which the platform lobbied hard for in recent weeks, is being celebrated.
Martin Jefflén, President of Eurocadres in welcoming the agreement said: ‘We have worked hard to remove the bad idea to require reporting to the employer before to a competent authority. We are very pleased this is now gone.'
According to platform member, Blueprint for Free Speech: ‘We are celebrating a major success - the EU has agreed legislation to give greater protections to whistleblowers across Europe! A huge thank you to all those who took action.’
The EU has agreed legislation to give greater protections to whistleblowers across Europe! A huge thank you to all those who took action.
Following the late-night agreement, the European Parliament’s whistleblower protection Rapporteur MEP Virginie Rozière, who led negotiations on the file said: ‘This text was one of my biggest priorities as an MEP and I am glad to see it succeed. We have had to fight to get a final text that meets expectations: whistle-blowers must be protected, whilst choosing the best means to be heard and to defend the interests of the citizens.’
Commenting on advocacy efforts, WeMove.EU said that, ‘Europe's Whistleblower Directive is a breakthrough for whistleblowers across the continent - and the quarter of a million petition signatures definitely helped.’
Europe's Whistleblower Directive is a breakthrough for whistleblowers across the continent - and the quarter of a million petition signatures definitely helped.’
However, in a somewhat dissenting comment, Ricardo Gutierrez, General Secretary of IFJ stated: While we welcome the agreement overall. We deeply regret that whistleblowers reporting directly to the media will only benefit from protection under restrictive conditions. We would have preferred them to be protected regardless of the channel used to issue the alert.’
Jefflén notes that, 'the final text is still being prepared and the complete package needs to be fully assessed, before we can make a full analysis.'
Timetable for the next few days:
Hopefully the final text will be ready, possibly by noon, latest in the evening.
COREPER II, the Council permanent representatives agree to the text.
JURI, the Legal affairs committee of the European Parliament agrees to the text.
Indicative date for the plenary vote in the European Parliament.
Follow www.whistleblowerprotection.eu and the twitter account @EUwhistleblower for updates.
Warm applause greeted the unanimous adoption of last week’s trilogue provisional agreement on whistleblower protection, at today’s European Parliament Legal Affairs Committee.
Members of the WhistleblowersProtection.EU platform mainly welcomed the provisional agreement reached by the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council, in the early hours of the 12th of March.
The European Union is expected to shortly adopt the EU’s flagship whistleblower protection directive. EPSU, believes it is essential that the final legislation fully protects whistleblowers and encourages whistleblowers to report wrongdoing, through which ever route they consider most appropriate, be that the media or relevant authorities.
MEP Virginie Rozière, European Parliament Rapporteur for the proposed whistleblower protection directive, yesterday, received petitions with more than 280,000 signatures, gathered by coalitions of trade unions and NGOs, which she handed over to the Council of the European Union at the final scheduled trilogue in the Parliament on Monday 4 March.
Today trade unions and NGOs will deliver two petitions gathering over 280,000 signatures supporting the European Parliament’s demands for an improved directive.
In an open letter to the European Council, Commission and Parliament seven well-known European whistleblowers speak out for changing the directive and removing barriers for safe reporting.
The EU Whistleblowing Directive is an idea whose time has come. New whistleblower protection laws in Ireland, France and the Netherlands showed consensus was building among EU Member States on the need to protect and enable workers to speak up about wrongdoing in the workplace.
The directive must be changed to that whistleblowers can report not only a special internal whistleblowing channel, but also to managers or law enforcement.
In an open letter 81 signing organisations urge the EU Council to adopt the Parliament’s position on reporting channels. The whistleblower protection directive is currently in trilogue. The signatories express serious concerns about the reporting channels regime in the Council and Commission positions in these negotiations.
A few weeks left to improve the whistleblower protection directive. Make your voice heard and sign the new petition for strong whistleblower protection!